Heating Your Home
Keeping your house warm can help you stay free of illness during the winter while ensuring that your pipes and electrical appliances don’t succumb to the cold weather. Many households in the UK benefit from central heating, which can now be controlled from a smartphone thanks to the emergence of smart heating technologies. However, electric heaters are another popular option for anyone looking to give their home some additional warmth.
One of the most common forms of electric heater, storage heaters charge overnight, when the cost of electricity tends to be lower, before releasing the ‘stored heat’ during the day. A storage heater can be composed of numerous materials, from clay bricks and other ceramic materials to concrete walls or water containers.
A key advantage of storage heaters is their low running costs, which are made possible by the use of cheaper electricity during the evenings or overnight. They are also very easy to install and require little to no maintenance work throughout their lifetime. Because they heat a home during the day, storage heaters can be a good option for anyone who stays at home during the day, such as elderly homeowners and pensioners, as they can take advantage of the cheaper electricity tariffs.
On the other hand, storage heaters aren’t the most convenient solution for people who work from nine to five during the week and therefore spend the majority of their day away from the house. These people won’t benefit from the heat that’s generated during the day, effectively making it ‘wasted energy’.
Since 1 January 2018, manufacturers and suppliers of electric heaters, or “local space heaters”, that use gas, electricity or liquid fuels have had to comply with a new piece of EU legislation called Lot 20. A key part of the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED), the legislation sets a minimum efficiency standard for these heaters and was introduced to help the EU achieve its carbon reduction targets. It affects the following products:
- Storage heaters
- Portable heaters
- Radiant heaters
- Direct acting heaters
- Electric fires
- Gas fires
- Infra-red heaters
- Underfloor heating
The products that aren’t affected by Lot 20 are as follows:
- Local space heaters that use a vapour compression cycle (heat pump)
- Heaters that are specified for outdoor use only
- Slave heaters
- Sauna stoves
- Towel rails
- Tubular heaters
- Air curtains
- Frost protection heaters
To comply with the new legislation, manufacturers need to incorporate modern technology into their heating products, which will make them more energy efficient. This could include such features as open window detection, adaptive start control, temperature controls with day or week timers, presence detection and distance control functions.
It’s worth bearing in mind that Lot 20 doesn’t affect heaters that were installed before 1 January 2018, so if you own an electric heater that doesn’t comply with the new legislation, you don’t have to replace it. However, with a number of more energy-efficient products now hitting the market, it might be time to consider an upgrade, especially if you’re keen to reduce your energy costs.
To ensure your new electric heater is installed professionally and safely, or to get some expert advice on your heating, give Mr. Electric a call today on 0800 7311 606.
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